‘No more coups’, Fiji’s navy commander tells nation

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Fiji Navy officers perform a meke during the Fiji Navy Day celebrations at Stanley Brown Naval Base in Walu Bay, Suva, on 27 July 2023
Fiji Navy officers perform a meke during the Fiji Navy Day celebrations at Stanley Brown Naval Base in Walu Bay, Suva, last Thursday. Image: Jonacani Lalakobau/The Fiji Times

By Arieta Vakasukawaqa in Suva

“The people of Fiji don’t deserve to go through another coup.”

This was the view shared by Fiji Navy commander Captain Humphrey Tawake while speaking to The Fiji Times during the Fiji Navy Day celebrations at Stanley Brown Naval Base in Walu Bay, Suva, this week.

“Fiji, as a nation doesn’t need another coup,” said Tawake, who is also deputy RFMF commander of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF).

“The RFMF commander has made his stance and we will abide by that.

“We will abide by the rule of law, there will be no more coups.

“We will respect the democratic process that has taken place and we must be mindful that we all have a role to play.”

Captain Tawake said at the event on Thursday that people or institutions should stop using the RFMF for their personal or political agenda.

‘Steadfast’ over rule of law
“RFMF is a professional institution and we stand steadfast to the rule of law and democracy.

“I stand by the RFMF commander, and I want to reiterate that again.”

RFMF commander Major-General Ro Jone Kalouniwai said last week he had made it clear during the Commander’s Parade earlier this month that the constitutional process must be followed.

He said they would continue to abide by the rule of law and order and continue to respect the decision of the people for voting in this particular government — the ruling coalition of Sitiveni Rabuka, who is both a former coup leader and prime minister.

Meanwhile, he said Thursday’s event was about commemorating 48 years of existence and the institution’s humble beginning in 1975.

Arieta Vakasukawaqa is a Fiji Times reporter. Republished with permission.

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